4 Jun 2019

Daybreak Book Corner: Tales from the Opera

From Upbeat, 8:45 am on 4 June 2019
Dr Bartolo and Rosina in The Barber of Seville

Dr Bartolo and Rosina in The Barber of Seville Photo: supplied NZ Opera

Some of the world's most famous operas have been reimagined by some of the world's most famous writers in a collection of short stories called Midsummer Nights - Tales from the Opera.

Edited by Jeanette Winterson Midsummer Nights - Tales from the Opera has writers such as Kate Atkinson, Sebastian Barry and Anne Enright taking on plots from Mozart's Don Giovanni, Beethoven's Fidelio and Gershwin's Porgy and Bess.

The publisher's notes say: "The best and brightest writers working today reimagine familiar stories from the greatest operas. Don Giovanni’s ghost haunts a young boy, Fidelio meets Porgy and Bess and two hapless men stage a Mozartian love test. Long-lost loves enter the dating game and undying witches finally get grey hairs. Funny, macabre or irreverent, these stories are charming for any opera lover and a beguiling collection in their own right."

Opera bass baritone and avid reader Andrew Collis who takes to the stage this month as Dr Bartolo in NZ Opera's production of The Barber of Seville kindly agreed to review this tribute to the opera world for us, snatching some reading time in between rehearsals.

If you would like to win a copy of Midsummer Nights - Tales from the Opera edited by Jeanette Winterson, email daybreak@rnz.co.nz with your name and address and answer this (very easy) question.

"Which Rossini opera is NZ Opera performing in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch in June, July and August of 2019?"

As always, our thanks to Anna Hunt at Wellington's Marsden Books, for this inspired suggestion.